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Meet the Dean

David A. Reingold

Photo of David A. Reingold.
Photo of David A. Reingold.

David A. Reingold

David A. Reingold is the Senior Vice President for Policy Planning at Purdue University and the Justin S. Morrill Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Purdue University on the West Lafayette Campus where he is a Professor in the Department of Sociology. He joined Purdue University as Dean of Liberal Arts March 1, 2015.

As Senior Vice President, he is responsible for coordinating Purdue's footprint in the nation's capital through the Purdue@DC initiative, leading Purdue's freedom of expression and freedom of inquiry efforts, implementing Purdue's systemwide civics literacy graduation requirement, and advancing critical thinking across the curriculum, among other university-wide initiatives.

As the Dean and chief academic and administrative officer of the College, he is responsible for the departments of History, English, Sociology, Political Science, Philosophy, and Anthropology, as well as the Brian Lamb School of Communication, the Patti and Rusty Rueff School of Design, Art, and Performance, the School of Languages and Cultures, and the School of Interdisciplinary Studies and faculty appointments and academic matters for Purdue Bands and Orchestras.

Purdue University Contributions

Dean Reingold has led the university system-wide implementation of Purdue’s new Civics Literacy graduation requirement since its adoption by the Board of Trustees, supporting the Land Grant mission of ensuring that graduates are well-prepared to contribute as leaders in their careers and their communities and are good citizens prepared to self-govern.

He serves as a member of the Advisory Board (and former co-director) of the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue (KITD), an independent bipartisan initiative at the intersection of technology and U.S. foreign policy. The KITD has engaged an illustrious group of engineering, policy, business, and government leaders committed to demonstrating the links between technology advances and national interests.

He led a Lilly Endowment grant, Leading Ethically in the Age of AI and Big Data. The grant resulted in the creation of two new AI majors at Purdue, a B.A. in AI from the Department of Philosophy and a B.S. in AI from the Department of Computer Science, College of Science.

Purdue College of Liberal Arts Priorities

During his tenure, the College of Liberal Arts has emerged as a leader in innovative liberal arts education with a particular focus on undergraduate education. As Dean of Liberal Arts, Reingold launched Cornerstone Integrated Liberal Arts, reimagining general education at Purdue. Cornerstone is now being replicated at 60-plus institutions nationally through a National Endowment for the Humanities program. Cornerstone is part of a series of initiatives across the College the including four areas of focus: strengthen undergraduate education, upgrade graduate education, enhance faculty excellence, and expand revenue sources.

In undergraduate education, the College launched the Cornerstone Integrated Liberal Arts ProgramDegree+, Degree in 3, opened a CLA Career Center, and created the Job-Ready Awards which have provided over $300,000 in financial support for students on low- and unpaid internships. Cornerstone has reimagined general education, putting faculty back in the classroom. It enrolled nearly 8,000 students in the first-year sequence for 2022-23. Close to 900 students are pursuing the 15-credit Cornerstone certificate. Four years after Degree+ was announced, nearly 800 students on the West Lafayette campus are working toward earning a B.S. and a B.A. from Purdue in four years. Since the launch of Degree in 3, average time to degree in the College of Liberal Arts has decreased from 4.22 years in 2016 to 3.94 years in 2022. New beginners in CLA have increased 27.4% from Fall 2015 to Fall 2021 after decreasing 40% in the prior five- year period. Thanks to these innovative programs, the number of students pursuing a credential from the College (degree or certificate) is over 4,200, a 50.6% increase since Fall 2016.

To upgrade graduate education, he led a graduate program right-sizing effort resulting in much more competitive stipends, an increased the number of students on research assistantships, a new, highly-competitive Dean’s Graduate Fellowship, and the creation of PROMISE, an internal grant program for graduate student research that has supported hundreds of proposals and has invested more than $1,000,000 from 2015-2022. Purdue’s graduate stipends for students in the social sciences, arts, and humanities are now among the highest in our disciplines across the Big Ten.

In support of faculty excellence, Reingold advanced an array of programs to support teaching innovation and scholarship: InnovateAspireCreate, and Engage. In Fall 2023, he launched the Dean’s Faculty Research Fellows program which will focus on enhancing faculty excellence and elevating our research profile. To that end, it will support faculty whose research projects can have significant influence on a field of scholarship He established a Dean’s Faculty Fellow program and sponsored participation in the Faculty Success Program offered by the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity for more than 40 assistant professors with a total investment in faculty research and professional development of nearly $3,400,000 from 2015-2022. As part of enhancing the research profile, the College’s faculty hiring has included significant investment in hires with pedagogical and research interests in artificial intelligence and sociogenomics.

To generate revenue, Dean Reingold has supported the growth of an online professional master’s degree in communication, which has produced approximately $25,000,000 of new revenue for Purdue during his years as Dean. He entered into a corporate partnership tied to the world-renowned Purdue Online Writing Lab (Purdue OWL), which has brought more than $3,200,000 in revenue to Purdue.

Purdue University’s Board of Trustees approved a $46.6 million renovation/restoration project that features a complete restoration of University Hall, the only remaining original campus building. It will create much-needed student collaboration and study spaces and modernized facilities for student services. The project will update and transform much of the physical space assigned to the College of Liberal Arts. It also includes renovations in Stanley Coulter and Beering halls. A 180-seat classroom, updated graduate student hubs, and a significant increase in student study space are among the Beering renovations.

The College of Liberal Arts has approximately 300 full-time faculty members, roughly 75 full-time lecturers, 115 professional and support staff, 300 doctoral students in 15 doctoral programs, over 500 professional online master’s students, over 2,500 undergraduate primary majors across 43 majors. The College of Liberal Arts delivers approximately 19% of all credit hours on Purdue’s West Lafayette campus and has an annual budget of over $80M.

Academic Career

Reingold’s primary teaching and research areas include urban poverty, economic development, social welfare policy, low-income housing policy, civil society, and government performance. His research has appeared in the Journal of Policy Analysis and ManagementPublic Administration ReviewSocial Service ReviewUrban Studies, the Journal of Urban Affairs, and Housing Studies, among other social science journals.

Prior to his appointment at Purdue, Reingold was executive associate dean and professor in the Paul O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University – Bloomington, which he led to a #1 U.S. News ranking.

Public Service

His public service experience includes three years in Washington D.C. as director of research and policy development at the U.S. Corporation for National and Community Service. He also was a member of the White House Task Force for Disadvantaged Youth and chair of the Task Force’s research committee, housing commissioner and vice-chairman of the Bloomington Housing Authority Board, board president of the South Central Community Action Program, and chair of the Indiana Commission on Community Service and Volunteerism. He has served on expert panels for the U.S. National Academy of Public Administration and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He has served on editorial boards for the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Social Service Review, Evaluation Review, the Journal of Urban Affairs, and the Journal of Public Affairs Education. Reingold is a founding director of the Community Investment Fund of Indiana, a state-wide community development financial institution.

Personal Life

A native of Chicago, Dean Reingold received his B.A. in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and his master’s and Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Chicago. He and his wife, Lynn Hooker, associate professor of music, have two children, Jessica and Jack.